Marketing – Creating and nurturing desire


A few opening questions…

  • Do new customers beat a path to your door, so you don’t have to hunt for fresh business at any time?
  • Do your existing customers always come back to you when they want some more of what you sell?
  • Do they contact you when they are faced with a problem, or considering a purchase in a related area, to find out if you can help them?
  • Has price stopped being a topic of conversation between you?
  • Has your retention department closed down because there is nothing for them to do?
  • Are you taking on more staff to handle all the referral business that you are receiving?

If your (honest) answer is, “no” to any of the above, then do not despair, because I have a simple solution for your business. By the way, if your answer is yes, then you are probably delusional and should seek professional help.

So, assuming that you have been honest, then you need to do two simple things, right now:

  1. Embrace the power of relationships and stop trying to do one off deals, before running to chase the next one off deal.
  2. Kick out your colouring in department and employ someone who knows about Marketing.

Let me explain…

Relationship Marketing is not a fad, a trend, or a business school curiosity. It is a faith, no, more than that, it is the path to enlightenment and repeat business.

Your customers may well grow to like you if they know you, but just like real life, this is unlikely to happen if you don’t create a good first impression, stay in touch, freely share interesting information, surprise them (nicely) and tell them amusing anecdotes that they can relate to. At no time should you let them down, cheat them, or promise things you cannot deliver.

In business, you are involved in the world’s largest dating organisation and if that carefully crafted profile turns out to be more like the person you aspire to be, rather than who you actually are, then you will forever be consigned to the business equivalent of lunchtime assignations in garden centre cafes, that never progress past first base.

Once you accept that a relationship is better than a one-night stand, you can grow your business. There is far more business out there than you will ever uncover by blundering around in your shiny suit, trying to sell the unwanted to the unwitting. You may enjoy some short-term success with style (however limited) over substance, but the lack of fulfilment will inevitably grow, the chase becomes ever more futile and down that road lie only; desperation, sadness and the loneliness of failure.

So – Stop wandering around in the dark, yelling at strangers, take a longer-term view and make some friends.